Even though he left the Eagles after the Hotel California tour in 1977 Randy Meisner will always be remembered as the voice of ‘Take it to the Limit’ and ‘Midnight Flyer.’ He still sings those Eagles hits live in his latest band the World Class Rockers but mostly he lives the simple life in his house in the hills of Studio City Los Angeles. We talked to Randy by phone.
John Beaudin – Hi Randy, it’s nice to talk to you. We built a section on the site so I can talk to whoever I want to!
Randy Meisner – Well, then I’m glad you chose me, thank you.
John – Where are you by the way?
Randy – Studio City Los Angeles. It’s right across from Universal City.
John – What are you up to these days?
Randy – I’m working with a group called W.C.R. which stands for World Classic Rockers.
John – You guys changed the line-up of the band, right? I noticed you sometimes play with Fergie Frederiksen , former lead singer of Toto.
Randy – Yeah, it changes sometimes. There was Spencer Davis, Nick St Nicholas who was with Steppenwolf, Ron Wikso from Foreigner on Drums and Denny Laine from Wings. We’ve been together for a while now maybe four to five years. We do mostly corporate dates.
John – When you say corporate dates, do you mean for major companies?
Randy – Yes, like Nortel and different corporations. The great thing is with this band every song is a hit. With corporate people they might hire a band and they may have three hits and maybe their other songs might not be as good as their hits but this thing just keeps growing and it is so good. We have had a great response from everyone we have played for.
John – I listened to a clip of the album you released with the live versions of things you released with the band and “Take It to the Limit’ is on there. What else do you do with the band besides singing lead?
Randy – Well, it depends on the dates. Sometimes Spencer has other work that he does and that is what is great about the group because we can come in and go as we please. As far as songs I do with the Eagles I normally sing “Take it Easy,’ “Already Gone,’ ‘Hearts on Fire,’ from my solo album. We also do “Hotel California’ and we have Fergie come up and sing that lead.
John – That is on the album isn’t it?
Randy – Yes and the album was done when we had different drummers and stuff because we worked with Bruce Gary for a while which is from ‘The Knack,’ My Sharona. He is a great drummer but things changed and now we have Ron Wikso playing drums from Foreigner. It is like going back in time, it really is and it is so much fun!
John – It must be kind of fun to know that you are playing with these guys but if you want to take some time off you really can, like you said players come and go.
Randy – Yes, just with Spencer and I since Spencer has other dates on his own. Basically just as far as traveling, I told him in the beginning that I wanted to be with the group. There is a certain time that I need at home because with the Eagles and stuff I was on the road so much. Now if my wife can’t come along, I am not happy. (Laughing) She has her own business and there are certain weekdays that she can’t come along and its like I want to do it but I have the option. The thing is the band is for everybody and everybody loves each other and there is no jealously or anything.
John – I was looking at the pictures on the net and it sounds like you guys are having a hoot!
Randy – It has been just wonderful and just like going back in time and I feel like I am seventeen years old sometimes. But maybe the next morning I don’t. (Laughing)
John – Oh, still some of that happening, huh?
Randy – Do you know what I am watching right now?
John – What?
Randy – I live in the hills in Studio City and my wife and I feed deer every night. There are two little fawns up here and they are spotted and they are twins. We have been feeding them for 14 years, since we moved up here. It is just so neat I just had to say that. We feed them and they come up every night and they trust us. You have to build trust in animals.
John – You know it is interesting that you should say that because if you look at a stereotypical view I think of anybody that is looking at some one who was with Poco and The Eagles they probably think he is sitting on his porch feeding deer and now you are doing it!
Randy – These little guys are so cute and altogether the animals we feed we have seen three skunk families raise their children. Everyone says they stink but they are the cutest little things in the world.
John – Do you have a lot of privacy where you live?
Randy – Very much so. I am on a little street that has a drive-way that comes to my house and there is a dead end and below my house is a lot of land and it is like in the mountains towards Universal city where you really can’t build on the hills. So, I leave my gates open for the deer and the animals and we feed them every night. It is like six feet from us and I think animals are the most wonderful things in the world.
John – Wow, talk about getting close to nature which is kind of important! Do you ever have something coming up to your door that maybe you don’t want coming to your door that could eat you or something? (Laughing)
Randy – (Laughing) Well, we have had a bobcat come up here but I just consider them beautiful animals. The thing is we take pictures because people do not believe us like in Hollywood Hills that there could be that many animals. Believe me over the last fourteen years we have built so much trust with them. We can watch them or put food out while they are eating and they don’t even move.
John – Do you still collect cars?
Randy – Oh God! I had a whole bunch of real ones around eight years ago. I had about twenty three cars antiques, mostly Fords. They were in Nebraska and I had a storage place for them there.
John – You are from Nebraska, right?
Randy -Yes I am and I grew up on a farm so that is why I like my privacy. I sold all of my cars and kept a little 44 pick-up and it is all restored. It has a little V-8, 85 in it with duel and fifteen inch tires and that is all I have done. It is just like perfection!
John – Who restores them, is it you or someone you know?
Randy – I didn’t restore this one, my cousin did and he went to Cal. State and a friend of his took this thing down to the frame and did it as an art project. So every bolt in the car he saved in a bag and put it back in the same spot. So, rather than sand the parts down he brought them to a place in Pasadena, California. He put the body and the fenders of the pick-up in a solution that takes the paint off without taking the metal away. There was a guy that worked at an old Ford dealership who painted it in this old enamel before they stocked the paint. It is just my little pride and joy!
John – I know you owned Porsche’s and were they vintage or new?
Randy – I had an old one and I wrecked it like a dummy. It was like a 914 from Germany and I think it was a 73. I just had all kinds of money in it and I was just getting ready to get it painted. I had the engine all rebuilt and everything and what a fast little car and it just ended up in a wreck. When it was totaled I was so sad. I worked on that car for three years.
John – Well, just like the Buddhists would say it is all about impermanence you just have to let it go, I guess! (Laughing)
Randy – (Laughing) Yeah, it is only material.
John – When you were with The Eagles were you into cars then?
Randy – Oh yeah, I have always been. I actually have a model collection that is over fifteen hundred cars. When I was in high school I use to build cars like modifying little 44’s with the guys that I knew. What I use to do is I’d buy model kits like AMT’s and build them by memory and it has always been a lot of fun for me and now I have all these models in my house.
John – Where do you find the room in your house to put them?
Randy – (laughing) Well, the house is full plus my wife and I collect antiques. We go to auctions all the time and get all this stuff and now it is like we kinda have to build another room in the house.
John – Do you get recognized when you go to auctions?
Randy – Not too much anymore but there used to be a time when that always happened.
John – Did that drive you crazy?
Randy – No, it is like part of your gig. They are the fans and they are the ones that make you. When I was with the Eagles like in Japan I remember these people would come up and they would want autographs and so they would have an album sitting out. (Laughing) I would go to sign it and they would have about twelve of them layered so it looked like one. It was like ‘kachunk’ like a little shutter thing and could I sign this too. (Laughing) I would just stand there signing all night and I would sign every one of them. You know there were all these people who came and wanted my autograph and I really appreciated that because they are fans and that is what makes us!
John – Well, that is a good attitude but I have to say I only hear that half the time. What I hear a lot of is, “Why won’t these people leave me alone!” Some of the people I have talked to are almost bitter and angry at their own fame. When you and I were growing up, especially in the era we grew up in, we all wanted to be rock stars. Of course that came to fruition for you.
Randy – Yeah, it is like a dream. I can tell you this every week I get about two or three letters from young kids all over the U.S. and all they want is an autographed picture. It is amazing and I don’t know if their parents tell them to do it but The Eagles played so many gigs that we have seen kids fifteen and sixteen years old singing all the lyrics. It just really makes you feel good and that they are appreciating what I did and the work we do.
John – Look at The Eagles greatest hits, it is the biggest selling album of all time in North America and that says a lot.
Randy – I know and I finally received that award. When they originally presented it Bernie Leadon and I weren’t even notified so we had to call and we finally received it. When I quit it was like Timothy Schmit joined the group and it was like Timothy was the guy now and I can’t blame them for that. All that stuff and all the arguing amongst The Eagles is over now. Well at least for me.
John- Do you still hang out with Don Henley and Glen Frey?
Randy – Well, not really.
John – But you played with them when you were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Randy – It was fun and we got to go on stage together, Bernie and I and the whole group. I got up to speak and I am not very good at that it was like blah, blah, blah.
ohn – When you were starting out was Poco your first big gig?
Randy – I did that first album with them ‘Picking Up the Pieces’ and then there was a thing where Richie Furay and I we made the album and then I called in and said, “I want to come down and listen to the mixes.” Richie for some reason thought he and Jimmy Messina should just do it alone. I said, “If that is the way it is going to be then I don’t feel like a member of the band,” and Richie said, “Okay, and you quit kind of thing.” So then I left. (Laughing) It was just as simple as that. Then I went back to Nebraska and worked with a friend of mine who owned a John Deer dealership. I was like a parts man for eight months and then Ricky Nelson called me and I played with him for a while. They were doing Rudy the Fifth and I was playing from nine to one in the morning and then getting to work at John Deer later and later every day. Pretty soon Ricky called and asked if I could come out and do a few songs and he said, “We want to hear your bass playing.” So I came out and then it started all over again. Then I started playing with Linda Ronstadt and Glen Fry and Don Henley that was after Poco.
John – So at that point you were finished with Ricky Nelson?
Randy – Well, I didn’t want to let Ricky down so I got a friend of mine Steve Love who was also in my band. I told Rick that he was a great singer, he could sing the high parts and he is a great guitarist and he can play bass anytime he wants. Steve got that job so I didn’t let Rick down. Then I went on with Don (Henley) and Glen (Frey).
John – Bernie came from the Burrito Brother’s right?
Randy – Yeah, he did and it was around that time too.
John – Do you remember the first gig you played with the other guys in the Eagle’s?
Randy – Yeah, it was the first time I played with Linda Ronstadt in San Jose, California and it was so much fun playing with Don and Glen. (Laughing) That was when it all started. Don and Glen knew me from Poco and Glen came from a group called Longbranch Pennywhistle with J.D. Souther. Henley came from a group out of Texas called Shiloh. So, that is how we all met and for me it all started with them noticing me in Poco. Then David Geffen got involved once we were already together.
John – Had you talked to Rick (Nelson) anytime before his death?
Randy – Yes, it was about eight months before that happened. At the time I wasn’t married and his girlfriend and my girlfriend were friends. We got to see Rick and we went out a couple of times and just hung out. All I can say is Rick was a great guy, he was extremely funny and a lot of people don’t know that about him.
John – You know what I kept hearing about him is in spite of the fact that he had been in show business from the time he was a little boy he was still an unpretentious guy.
Randy – Exactly that is what I was trying to say. (Laughing) Yeah, he was always a regular guy and always a lot of fun.
John – He could have easily been a child actor casualty.
Randy – That certainly didn’t happen to him and I never saw that in him. I loved that man.
John – Were you involved in the reunion album with Poco?
Randy – Yes, I was and that was like seven or eight years ago.
John – Was that fun for you?
Randy – It wasn’t very good. (Laughing) I had done some recording with Richard Marx and he wrote a song for me. Then we all got back together and it was really fun actually. Let me tell you what really happened. This was going down around the time of the Persian Gulf War and our management had arranged all these things on military bases. We had all this merchandising to sell and when we got to all these army bases we were playing to empty crowds because all the troops were in the Persian Gulf. After that we played a few more things but I ended up paying all this money for merchandising rather than making money on it. We did make a record and I thought it was good. Richie Furay is a minister in Boulder, Colorado. So, when we went out we had to change our lyrics like on the song “Hearts on Fire” we had to change the line “I had myself a tall one waiting in the bar I didn’t want to leave here until I had her in the car” it got to Richie. I had to respect Richie but one night we were playing in Toronto and the crowd was really good and I sang the original lyric and Richie got kind of upset about that. Also, Jimmy Messina couldn’t sing “I had her in the backseat” on his song. I really got frustrated with that because we weren’t singing the original lyrics of these songs so I left. We did finish the tour but I didn’t make a penny. We did travel all over and we went to Europe for a month to promote this whole album. Out of a month we played twenty four days and we would get up at five in the morning, go to every radio station in Europe and plug this album. It didn’t do a darn bit of good. So, I have had my road work, you know? (Laughing)
John – I remember the day when I found out that you left the Eagles I was seventeen and I was talking to one of my best friends. I was really pissed off at you for leaving and then my buddy looked at me and said, “Hey, this guy can probably live off the residuals of being in this band forever and he is going off to do his own thing and you are pissed off at him?”
Randy – I can’t blame a lot of people for being mad at that. After Hotel California I had been on the road so much and I was married and going then going through a divorce. I thought this whole thing has taken its toll. When you are on the road your whole life you really don’t have a normal life. There were so many books written about the Eagles that said we always bitched at each other but the bottom line is that is in the past now. I don’t want to end up hating every body for the rest of my life and I won’t. I look at the Eagles as just good compadres that I’ve worked with in the past. I have no ill will towards any of them.
John – It sounds like you are a peace with these guys?
Randy – There is a time when you got to stop bitching I am getting too old for that. (laughing)
John – Brings to mind the old saying about hate being hard on the heart.
Randy – Exactly, you got it right on the money. You will grow old fast and die quicker.
John – Do you remember exactly how you felt when you left the Eagles?
Randy – Like it was yesterday (laughing) I was pretty messed up with that divorce. Yes, I really did want to do my own thing and then I realized how much I really wanted to be in a group. All the pressure was on me as a solo artist then, every interview, every decision and everything had to be made by me. Then I realized that I didn’t want to do this anymore. I bet you when Henley went out on his own he was doing the same thing working really hard. All the promotional stuff is really not me. I would rather just be playing with a bunch of good guys having a good time.
John – I remember a few years ago watching a live Don Henley special on A&E and he mentioned something interesting that he just couldn’t believe how long it took to get from the beginning to the end of an album. There were so many different components to making an album.
Randy – Especially for Henley, he is such a stickler. You just have to listen to his music. (laughing)
John – So, you listen to Don’s stuff?
Randy – Don he is a perfectionist and so am I. So, I guess we are both the same. I have heard Don’s last album and he is always good. He has got the golden throat. I think David Geffen said that of him so many years ago. Looking back I had the real high voice in the Eagles. The purpose of the whole Eagles thing to me was that combination and the chemistry that made all the harmonies just sound perfect. The funny thing is after we made those albums I never listened to them and it is only when some one comes over or I am at some body’s house and it gets played in the background that is when I’ll tell myself, “Damn, these records are good.” (Laughing)
John – (laughing) Paul McCartney has said that about the Beatles and he is always saying that he hears the band in the background and before his brain reminds him that he was in that band there is another part of him that just says, “Man, that band was good.” To him these songs were recorded so long ago that he is far removed enough to listen to the songs with fresh ears.
Randy – Yeah that is the same thing with me. Once you are in the studio you’ve heard that album so many times you have heard it to death. When you are done with it its like you are really done.
John – The Eagles especially on “The Long Run” were kind of accused of doing the Steely Dan thing over producing. I really think it worked with Steely Dan but sometimes an album can be over produced.
Randy – There is something to be said for that. You can be too much of a perfectionist and then you lose the real feel for the album. Henley always does a pretty damn good job though.
John – It sounds like Henley is a lot more comfortable in his skin these days with the Eagles reunion and especially with his family life.
Randy – I hope so and good for him.
John – Do you listen to radio?
Randy – A little bit. I use to listen to talk radio a lot but it makes me too damn mad. I love radio but I don’t listen to a lot of music on FM. Talk radio can be very political and it makes people mad especially the political side of it. I have said some things about politics that have made people really mad so I don’t really go there anymore. You just vote for who you thinks right and you hope for the best. (Laughing) I am just a down home old guy. (laughing)
John – Did you know the guys in the World Class Rockers in the seventies?
Randy – Not really. I knew Spencer (Davis) but not Denny (Laine). I was familiar with his work but I didn’t know him.
John – Would you trade war stories after each gig?
Randy – Oh, you can’t help but do that. We’re really doing the same thing that we were doing when we were young except it is a little harder to get up in the morning now. (laughing)
John – You know Randy we used to say that Poco was the farm team for The Eagles. It’s interesting how Timothy (Schmit) replaced you in both Poco and the Eagles.
Randy – (laughing) Yeah, I guess they were. Poco kinda started the whole thing along with the Byrds and Bernie Leadon in the Burrito Brothers and stuff. We were all kind of the front runners in the country rock thing.
John – Well, when people go back to the history of the music these bands are always mentioned and hopefully they always will be. I look at singer songwriters now and Country artist and it’s hard to deny that they were all influenced by those styles.
Randy – Years and Years later, yeah, the Nashville thing especially is what the Eagles did. Just look at what the Nashville players are doing. They’re good but God I don’t know how they write so many songs so fast. They have an idea one night and the next day the records out. They do an album in like a day.
John – I tracked down John Jarvis a few years ago. I don’t know if you know him but he played and won Grammy’s with Vince Gill and the Judds and he said the same thing, it’s a fast machine.
Randy – Oh God, they call Nashville the cookie cutter, just bam, bam, bam. Here they are. Some of them are such great musicians. There’s a guy in Nashville named John Hobbs, he’s a keyboard player and he played on my first album. He’s one of the top guys down there. I call that album my scatter-gun album because I wanted to do every kind of song thinking that one of them would hit but I didn’t have any continuity. So every song on that one was different. I did “If You Want to Be Happy For the Rest of Your Life.” Do you remember that?
John – Oh yeah, I had that one.
Randy – (Starts singing the song) If You Want to Be Happy For the Rest of Your Life. That was a song from high school that I always loved and John Hobbs played on that and Ernie Watts who played with the Johnny Carson band. He’s just the best sax man in the world. So the players were great on the album at least I can say that (laughing). Sometimes you gotta take a deep breath and say well this is just kind of fun.
John – Tell me about your second solo album “One More Song?”
Randy – Yeah, that was the one with Eric Kaz and Wendy Waldman. Val Garay produced that one and I felt that one was my best. The one after that was with Michael Flicker, who did Heart and I had Nancy Wilson on it on a song called “Strangers” that Elton John wrote and there’s some good music on there as well.
John – Did you enjoy working with Mike Flicker?
Randy – Well, he wanted to make me more of a hard rocker. It was okay and it was fun. It was at that point that I realized that I didn’t want to be a solo artist.
John – Well, there really is comfort in a group setting isn’t there?
Randy – Oh yeah! After that I worked with Rick Roberts of Firefall.
John – Firefall was one of my favorite bands in the seventies.
Randy – Yeah he’s a great guy. We played together for maybe three or four years doing mostly small clubs.
John – Was that before or after you worked with Billy Swan?
Randy – That was before. The project with Billy Swan was called Meisner Swan and Rich with Alan Rich whose dad Charlie Rich sang “Behind Closed Doors.” I sang and wrote a great one on that album called “My How Things Have Changed.”
John – Was that one autobiographical?
Randy – Oh Yeah. It’s about how many changes I’ve had in my life. It’s an attempt at writing. (Laughing)
John – I remember listening to your debut album and that first song “Bad Man” written by J.D. Souther and Glen Frey.
Randy – You know that song got on the movies “FM.” I was still with Irving Azoff as a manager who of course is with The Eagles and he was the one that got that tune on the soundtrack. (Randy starts singing the song)
John – If I remember correctly other than “Take It to the Limit” you didn’t write any of the tunes on that first album right?
Randy – That’s right like I said it was a scatter-gun album with everything on it. Alan Brackett the producer helped me a lot on that album. He had a few writers that he knew that did some songs on it.
John – Well, I enjoyed that album.
Randy – Thanks John. That’s good to hear. I just wanted to make a record on my own at that stage in my life.
John – Rick Roberts is officially out of Firefall right?
Randy – Yeah, he’s out and living in Boulder Colorado. I talk to him every once in a while. He’s a great writer and he’s been working on some new stuff.
John – You and him together as a duo again would be great! Your voices would work together really well.
Randy – Oh yeah, (laughing) it works. As for getting together it’s a matter of my life now is me and my wife and this house and my little dog and my tomatoes.
John – Who am I to get between you and your tomatoes. (laughing)
Randy – (laughing) I know it sounds stupid but it really means a lot. I really love fresh tomatoes.
John – Hey, you’re preaching to the choir. I eat tomatoes like apples.
Randy – If you get them off the vine there’s nothing like it. I raise them every year and I can almost raise them all year round. Around my pool in the back yard there’s a fence because the deer would come up and eat them all. They’d also eat the roses. I’m really sensitive when it comes to tomatoes. (laughing) It’s like they’re human or something.
John – How long have you been with your wife?
Randy – We’ve been together sixteen or seventeen years. We got married in November 1996 and I was really scared to get married.
John – Hey, man we all are. (Laughing)
Randy – (laughing) Yeah with all the divorces but we were getting along so good. My wife’s best girlfriend got married and I watched her face at the wedding and that spoke to me. Then her younger brother got married and I watched her at that wedding and then I knew it was time. I was worried though because everything was going so good I thought if I got married it would change everything. It was kind of stupid since once I got married I thought hey this is no problem.
John – Was this your third marriage?
Randy – Second but it seemed like three. (Laughing) I first got married when I was really young in Nebraska and you know my grand daughter graduated from high school a few years ago so that gives you a little inch on my age. I have to use a walker to get on stage. (laughing)
John – (laughing) Okay, that part we will not believe. Tell me what do you think of this whole piracy thing. I know napster is long dead but what are your thoughts on it.
Randy – Well, I’ve always thought of it as everyone just making a cassette. It’s just the same but the problem is it’s not a cassette its digital and it sounds just like the original. When you make a cassette for someone there’s white noise on it. I just don’t want it to screw up my royalties. What do you think about it?
John – First hand I don’t buy albums. I get everything free from the record companies anyway. I get at least one hundred CD’s in the mail every month so I get music in a different way than most people. I think the record companies cannot really beat this thing without joining in this and beating the piracy at their own game and many are doing that now.
Randy – Sure there are many ways to look at it. If the music gets out there more than maybe someone who downloads one song will want to buy the whole album. Maybe they’ll want the whole original thing with jewel box and liner notes. For me personally, I just don’t want to be cheated out of my royalties and I’m okay.
John – One of my producers Neil Thompson says it’s great for him as an artist since it gets his music out there.
Randy – Yeah, he’s right. It’s great for new artists. You know I’ve got three live albums from the Eagles and they sound like crap.
John – Live albums recorded with hand held tape recorders?
Randy – Oh Yeah. The sound is awful. They’d have guys with poles with mic’s on them on each side of the stage to try to get the stereo effect but they sound terrible. If you want the real thing buy the record. Some body sent me an outtake CD of the Eagles in the studio talking back and forth to each other. I have no idea where it came from.
John – Do you have your own outtake stuff that you recorded with the Eagles?
Randy – Well I lost a tape of the second album we made “Desperado.” Everyday I would go in the studio when the Eagles would rehearse and I had one of those early first Sony stereo’s that came in a little bag and it had two little speakers with it. I went to Radio Shack and bought this little cheap mic and before we would rehearse I’d have this little mixer and I would set up all the mics on all the amps and the drums and everything and when they came in I recorded it. I ended up with a pretty good recording as cheap as it was. I had “Doolin’ Dalton” and “Desperado” and all that stuff. So we went to Hawaii to play and I must have been dreaming or something and I left that thing laying in the airport and so someone got that cassette player and the tape. Someday that thing is going to show up and I can’t wait.
John – What a collector’s item. If someone has it out there please contact us and we’ll get you a copy of it Randy.
Randy – Yeah, that would be great. I was so mad that I lost it. I’ll bet that it’ll show up some day unless somebody didn’t know what it was and threw it out.
John – Yeah the Eagles only had one actual album out at that point. You weren’t really that well known yet and the stuff on the tape hadn’t been released so to an unfamiliar person it sounded like a demo from just a band.
Randy – Yeah that true. I think a lot of these specialty in-studio CD’s that get circulated are put together obviously by people who work in the studio. They have their private little cassette recording on the side. In some ways I think its fun. It’s all kind of fun unless it’s detrimental to you. (Laughing)
John – I’ll just ask a few more here. I know you have to go but at what point with the Eagles did you know that this band was going to be a great financial thing.
Randy – I’d say that happened when “One of These Nights” came out. We were doing a lot of gigs before that opening up for Jethro Tull and Joe Cocker but then everything changed. I looked at Irving Azoff one day and said, “Boy, this is big time now.” I could tell it was really working and all of a sudden we got hit with all this stuff. It became huge.
John – And that was before “Hotel California.” It must have gone really nuts after that?
Randy – Oh, Yeah really nuts and that’s when I left. I did the tour for “Hotel California.”
John – Did the other guys know you were going to leave?
Randy – No, not really. Glen (Frey) and I got into a little fight but it’s something that just happened and we kind of got mad at each other and took a swing at each other in Knoxville Tennessee. (Laughing) At the time to me it was just like two guys fighting but it got really bad so at that point I just decided to leave because I just didn’t like what I was doing anymore.
John – Any regrets about leaving the Eagles?
Randy – Not really but I wish I could of left in a different way though. I mean how are you going to be nice when you leave.
John – It’s interesting that you should say that because most of us leave our love relationships like that. Most of the time the ending is not pretty. Later in years hopefully it gets resolved where one person calls the other and says, “Listen, I don’t like the way it ended” but that doesn’t always happen.
Randy – Exactly. That’s the deal. You do it and then you have to stand with what you did. Probably the worst part of this whole deal is all the books that were put out.
John – I read a bit of “Take it to the Limit.”
Randy – Yeah, there were a couple of them. It’s like catching someone at a wrong time when everyone was kind of angry at everyone else. You say things that you really don’t mean. These people want the dirt and they forget that most of the time there was not any dirt. Most of the time we got along really well. Years later you read it and its dirt and you think why in the hell did I say that about him whether it’s Glen or Henley. For God sakes were just people. It was a time where there was a little resentment.
John – It changes doesn’t it?
Randy – Yeah, when you get older you think why think about that stuff, it’s not worth it.
John – It’s easy for folks out there to judge these days. There you guys were bigger than world but what you went through was appropriate for the circumstances.
Randy – Exactly and there’s a time when you say enough is enough. I don’t hold any grudges or hatred. Let’s get on with life and have some fun. You know with the Eagles I was on my own all the time. All I saw were airports, the hotel room and the hall. Now when I do shows and my wife comes along we go to antique shows and we go shopping and we actually get the feel for the city that makes it great.
John – Okay, our bodies ache more now but don’t you overall like being older and just knowing more?
Randy – Oh, they ache. (Laughing) Sure, that’s true. With the Eagles there just was never any time. We did the shows, we traveled, and we did interviews. It was always bam, bam, bam.
John – In those days you guys did hang out together, right?
Randy – Oh God, we did a lot of that but by “Hotel California” it was like separate limo’s and everybody had their own thing going and it was just getting kind of tiring.
John – Do you have any plans of quitting music?
Randy – Totally quitting? No, I don’t think I’ll ever do that.
John – We got sidetracked a while ago talking about the Poco/Eagles farm team thing. Well, it’s kind of wacky that you were replaced in Poco by Timothy B. Schmit and when you left the Eagles in 1977 he was the guy who replaced you there.
Randy – Yeah, he’s following me around. (Laughing) He’s a really nice guy. When we were inducted in the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame he made such a nice remark giving me all the best and saying, “Remember that Randy did most of this work with the Eagles not me.” It was so honest and so nice.
John – I hear you are a big Honeymooners fan?
Randy – Yeah, I watch that and Andy Griffith. I am a down home guy.
John – Randy, it’s been very special for me to talk with you. It means a lot. Thank you so much for your time.
Randy – John, you’re very welcome. It was fun. You take care and keep eating tomatoes. (laughing)